Aviation Alcohol and Sober October

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Join Throttle Back the Bottle and Sober October

Today, we are going to talk about the Throttle Back the Bottle program and Sober October; taking a break from alcohol to reset, reflect and possibly revise how alcohol plays into our lives.


There is no doubt that the aviation community has a culture of alcohol….


When I began my aviation career back in the 80s, flying first class was a regular part of life, and the free flowing alcohol and good times were part of it.


It was not unusual for the flight attendants to send the happy non revenue airline employees on their way with a bottle or two of fine wine out of first class. And, we were certainly happy to take; and partake.


All good, no harm, no foul.


For me, as I move into my older middle age, I have started evaluating and questioning my relationship with alcohol. Maybe you have, too?


From an aviation lingo perspective, consider this:


An airplane at the end of the runway, ready for take off has ONE destination programmed in. Do you know your desired destination? Is that where you are currently headed and what you have programmed in? Is it where you want to go?



With that, let’s talk about taking a break from alcohol; what it means and doesn’t mean!


October is right around the corner and I’m running a 31 day break or reduction from Alcohol for Sober October.


A number of members in the Aviation Fitness group took part in this in January, and we had a very successful run, which was personally my 3rd “Dry January!” or, Dryuary, as it’s called.


Dryuary originated in the UK  in 2012 as an initiative by Alcohol Change UK, a British charity, to “ditch the hangover, reduce the waistline and save some serious money by giving up alcohol for 31 days.”


In the Aviation Fitness Facebook group - join us there if you are not already a member, It helped a number of us gain some awareness, clarity and clean up around our health, alcohol and the self image we want for ourselves now and into the future.


For me, I liked the idea of kicking off the New Year by nixing booze from my life for a month. A sort of a post-holiday cleanse, and a reboot from the 2-3 previous months of excess regarding of food, wine and alcohol in general.


For me, the holiday season starts with Halloween, moving quickly to Thanksgiving, Christmas and then I staggered right into New Year’s eve, capped off with brunch and mimosas and bloody mary’s on New Years Day.


I liked this idea of Dryuary as an alternative to a traditional New Year’s resolution, which often involves elevating our health, eating better., working out, joining a gym, etc.


Dryuary was a way to challenge myself and gain some benefits such as feeling healthier, sleeping better, dropping a few pounds. And, unlike a gym membership, Dryuary actually saves me money.


And, to be honest, it forced me to consider the the role alcohol plays in in my everyday life, and whether I wanted to continue in that way.


I am not an alcoholic, nor do I have an addition to it. I always say - I am addicted to my habit of alcohol, and the experience of it. More on that later, ha!


If you want to play along Join US!


Ok, I know, I hear you already - do we have to really forgo wine with dinner, happy hour with friends, and beers while watching football games, for a month? And, what about Halloween parties?


PLEASE hear and know this - The answer is undefined, except by you. WHAT?


Let’s talk about who is this for and what does it mean?


First, it DOES NOT MEAN:


You are an alcoholic!

You can never drink again.

You have a problem.

You won’t be or have fun!


It simply does not mean anything about you, or your alcohol habits, except whatever YOU want it to mean.


So, who is it for?


It’s for anyone who may have had any of these thoughts or questions:


Am I happy with when and how much I drink?

Do I over drink?

WHY do I drink so much?

Is alcohol affecting my health? My sleep? My sex life - OH, I got some GOOD stuff around sex and alcohol.

Is alcohol having an impact on my children? My marriage and relationships?

Is alcohol keeping this extra weight on my body?

Is alcohol relieving my stress and anxiety or adding to it? You may be surprised by some of the science and data I have to share on that.


You may also wonder:


What will people say? Think? Do? How will they react? Will I get unfriended? Will I still be invited and fit in socially?


I’m going to let you in on a little secret - how YOU handle this socially and with your friends will determine how they react and handle you.


When I did my first Dry January, I let my friends know what I was up to and why. That first one was just me wanting to clean house and just see how committed I could be, Could I actually DO it? Go 31 days. I’ll let you know right now, I did not make all 31 days. I had a 4 day deviation while stressed out, on vacation, when some shocking news was revealed to me.


After that, I had a choice - throw in the towel or pick myself back up. And, I picked myself back up, choosing to focus on the 27 days of success vs beating myself up over the 4 days of deviation.


More than anything, I learned about myself, my motives for drinking and how I used alcohol as a crutch to avoid dealing with feelings.


I share more on this at


That first go was January of 2020; then came the pandemic and we all know a bit about that story. I fell into the drinking mosh pit like so many, happy hour every day at 4, then 3, then sometimes 2, sometimes mimosas in the morning….


And then one evening, I realized, after I poured my second glass of red wine, that I was not even enjoying it. I walked inside and poured it down the sink. That was June of 2020, and I did a 45 day AF streak then.


Doing that was a win for me to realize - HEY, I can do this, see it through and last more than 31 days. January of 21 and 22 were also successes.


The biggest question I am asked is - do you still drink. And, the answer is yes. But in a much different way. Intentionally instead of mindlessly. And, in a way that is not burying my feelings and emotions; using not to handle stress and anxiety. or thinking that in some way, alcohol makes everything better.


So, with that, I would love to invite you to join in.  Find out if this might be a fit for you, this month, with the holidays coming up. To make some decisions for yourself about what you want to do, how you want (or don’t want) alcohol to fit into your life, and ultimately what’s right for you:


Go to



And, join the aviation fitness group on Facebook


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